By Ishtiaq Ahmed
The evil of Islamophobia strikes with vengeance to thwart a promising political career of a Conservative Muslim women MP in UK, the Reporters has learnt.
Conservative MP Nusrat Ghani claims that her abrupt removal in 2020 from the ministerial position that she held was because of her Muslim faith. She intimidated to the Sunday Times that when she sought an explanation of her dismissal, she was told by a party whip that her Muslim faith was “making colleagues feel uncomfortable”.
She also said that she was told about concerns that she was not doing enough to defend the Tories against allegations of Islamophobia.
Ghani also revealed that her ministerial journey had not been easy. She had been subjected to scores of emails from a Conservative activist and constituent praising Enoch Powell’s “river of blood” speech and questioning whether immigrants should be allowed to stand for Parliament.
The MP also relates of an “incredible draining” ordeal of being stalked for two years by a man who made it clear that he targeted her because she was a female MP, Asian and a Muslim.
Born in Kashmir to Pakistani parents, 49-year-old Ghani grew up in Birmingham before studying at Birmingham City University and Leeds.
Ghani has been first many times. She was the first Muslim female minister to speak from the Commons dispatch box, the first Muslim woman elected as a Tory MP in 2015, the first woman to represent the Conservative stronghold of Wealden, East Sussex and has said she was the first woman in her family to attend university.
She had been widely tipped for a job overseeing HS2 before being sacked without an explanation.
Ghani’s claims prompted immediate condemnation from her colleagues in the government. Nadhim Zahawi has asked for an investigation into the claims. She also has been advised by Dominic Rennie Raab, the Deputy Prime Minister, Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor to make a formal complaint about her Islamophobic treatment.
At the present, the world’s oldest democracy is under enormous strain. Allegations of ‘political sleaziness’, double standards, lying, blackmail and political horse trading are rife. The integrity of the institution has been under a severe scrutiny since the debacles of Tony Blair, ‘the expenses claim’ saga and the current doings of the Prime Minister and his team is not helping to restore trust and confidence in the Parliamentarians.
The ardent defenders of democracy, including myself, would say that despite inherent problems as outlined above, there is no better alternative. Yes, I agree that alternatives to democracy are not worth contemplating but there are alternatives to sleaziness, lying, political fraud, double standards, cover ups, and political horse trading etc.
Islamophobia is rife in our political institutions and I have no reason to doubt Nusrat Ghani’s claims. What would help her to tell us whether the racist emails from a party activist and her stalking ordeal was reported to the Party hierarchy and the police and what was the outcome, if any?